DuckDuckGo’s CEO calls out Facebook and Google

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Feb 7th


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Gabriel Weinberg, CEO and founder of search engine, DuckDuckGo published an article last month where he made a very bold statement against two tech giants, Google and Facebook. Weinberg says “It’s time to make them stop” toward both of the tech giants in regards to their stances on privacy. He is quoted saying “Google and Facebook’s impact on our privacy cannot be understated.” and “76 percent of websites now contain hidden Google trackers, and 24 percent have hidden Facebook trackers, according to one study.” Now it might not be a surprise to many people but really, he has a very valid point.

But I’m skeptical, I don’t think much if anything is going to change. These two companies are at the top of their game in their respective and honestly – even markets they don’t care that much about, they seem to be at the top of them as well. Not only do I not see any game plan of action, who is going to listen, who is going to care and who is going to take action? It is very easy to get a mob by stating the facts and telling them they’re getting played – but it’s also a lot harder to get this mob off their ass and off their Facebook, YouTube etc.

Mr. Gabriel also went on to say “As a result, these two companies have amassed huge data profiles on each person, which can include your interests, purchases, search, browsing and location history, and much more. They then make your sensitive data profile available for invasive targeted advertising that can follow you around the Internet.” The scary part for me is how indepth the “profiling” of me could get. But then another part of me thinks that targeted advertising maybe isn’t so bad because honestly, I’m probably interested in whatever they have to say.

Google and Facebook already have such strong positions in the advertising industry on the internet and on top of them being able to scour the net to gain personal information on people – to create these huge online profiles of everyone; they’re going to be able to target you in much more detail and a lot quicker than any other advertiser in the game. In fact, Gabriel was quoted saying “they now make up 63 percent of all digital advertising, and accounted for 74 percent of this market’s growth in 2017, according to eMarketer. Together they form a tight digital advertising duopoly, showing no signs of abating.”

To me, I hear this and envision how far gone the situation has become. Yes, it is scary how detailed and personal these reports probably are. Yes, I would prefer if this wasn’t the situation for everyone that uses the net on a somewhat consistent basis. However I’m not going to stop using Google, YouTube, Google Maps and YouTube music. I could drop Facebook, but hey – I’m already this far into their little game, what could the harm be in just having a Facebook account? I like what he’s doing and I also like DuckDuckGo, but I feel like this call of duty is only going to fall on deaf ears.

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